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Chapter 11 The history of physical and health impairments

History of Special Education

ISBN: 978-0-85724-629-5, eISBN: 978-0-85724-630-1

Publication date: 28 January 2011


Throughout the ages, caring for an individual with a significant physical disability and/or health impairment has been extremely difficult or perhaps even impossible. Conditions for survival were often hard, requiring all able-bodied family members working from dawn until dark to scratch out even a minimal standard of living. Consequently, little time and resources were available for the care of a loved one with a disability. Safford and Safford's sobering volume (1996) emphasizes that children have always been vulnerable to neglect and children with disabilities were particularly subject to abuse. To illustrate this, children with disabilities were particularly subject to infanticide, abandonment, slavery, sterilization or placed in orphanages, where maiming sometimes occurred to increase the individuals' potential for street corner begging.


Fulk, B.M., Watts, E. and Bakken, J.P. (2011), "Chapter 11 The history of physical and health impairments", Rotatori, A.F., Obiakor, F.E. and Bakken, J.P. (Ed.) History of Special Education (Advances in Special Education, Vol. 21), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 269-288.



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